Central Florida, Tampa Bay organizations recognize World AIDS Day 2019 with events

By : Watermark Staff
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World AIDS Day is the first-ever global health day and has taken place every Dec. 1 since 1988. It is a day where the entire planet comes together to remember the nearly 40 million lives lost to the virus, but also to acknowledge those still living with the disease and to celebrate the advances made in fighting HIV/AIDS.

Several groups and organizations will be holding events on, and throughout the week surrounding, World AIDS Day in the Central Florida and Tampa Bay. We have gathered a list of events with information and links below for you to help raise funds, remember those we have lost, honor those living with the virus and places you can get tested.

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From Headdress with Love

By : Jeremy Williams
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Hope and Help’s 27th Annual Headdress Ball was a huge success in their new home at the Marriott Orlando World Center Sept. 17, as they raised a record setting $356,000.

The massive ballroom looked like the circus rolled into town with acrobats, dancers and drag queens entertaining at every turn. 

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Headdress Ball 2015 raises $325,000 for Hope and Help

By : Jamie Hyman
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Headdress Ball 2015 is in the books.

Here’s the press release from Hope and Help: 

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Orlando AIDS Walk raises $121,000 for Hope & Help Center

By : Kimberly Slichter
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The Orlando AIDS Walk marched around Lake Eola for its 20th year to raise money for the Hope & Help Center on March 28.

The two mile walk, a fundraiser for HIV treatment and prevention in Central Florida, brought in more than $121,000 and 1,400 walkers according to Kristine Iverson, director of development and marketing for the Hope and Help Center.

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Headdress Ball 2015 has date and theme

By : Jeremy Williams
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The Hope and Help Center announced the date and theme for their 26th annual Headdress Ball.

The annual fundraiser will be at the Hilton Orlando off I-Drive Oct. 17.

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Headdress Ball 25

By : Jake Stevens
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Hope & Help Center’s Headdress Ball celebrated 25 years in a big way on Sept. 20, raising more than $640,000 for the HIV/AIDS charity. Fabulous entertainment, over-the-top art and a performance by Debbie Gibson helped make the black-tie gala one for the record books.

Check out tons of great photos after the jump!

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Headdress Ball celebrates 25 Years

By : Dylan Drobet
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Orlando – Headdress Ball celebrates its 25th anniversary on Sept. 20 and plans call for it to be the largest and wildest ball yet. The milestone event is the Hope and Help Center of Central Florida´s largest fundraiser of the year and the Central Florida AIDS service organization has raised over $5 million since its inception. The center’s mission is simple: to save lives by treating and preventing the spread of HIV/AIDS in Central Florida.

Headdress Ball is often referred to as Orlando´s most outrageous black tie event. It is an evening of food, drinks and lively Las Vegas-style entertainment. In addition to the dinner, awards, live auction and entertainment there is, of course, a headdress exhibition.

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Guest column: The perfect storm

By : Marilyn Carifi
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Marilyn Carifi, MSW, is the Executive Director of Hope & Help Center of Central Florida, Inc.

Hope and Help Center of Central Florida has served people with HIV and AIDS for 26 years. In the past several months there has been major upheaval in the system of care for a number of reasons, most stemming from the Affordable Care Act. Most have heard of the website freezing, and the State of Florida refusing millions of dollars in Medicaid funds from the federal government which would have helped the people who are less than 133% of the federal poverty line. Here are the other issues you may not have heard before.

Hope and Help Center has been contracted by multiple agencies, primarily Ryan White Parts A & B and the Health Council of South Florida, Inc., to provide financial assistance to eligible consumers such that they can maintain their private health insurance without major financial burden.

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2014 AIDS Walk raises nearly $150,000

By : Patrick O'Connor
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Orlando Nearly 1,500 people raised $143,000 at the 2014 Orlando AIDS Walk, benefiting Hope and Help of Central Florida, Inc.

The walkers, wearing colorful T-shirts, braved the gloomy, drizzly weather March 29 to gather around the Walt Disney Amphitheater at Lake Eola Park to watch openly gay Orlando City Commissioner Patty Sheehan welcome attendees to the event.

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AIDS Walk Orlando will showcase diversity March 29

By : Samantha Rosenthal
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Orlando – Since 1995, Hope and Help of Central Florida has hit the streets of Downtown Orlando to help raise money and awareness about those affected by HIV/AIDS in the region. This year the AIDS Walk Orlando returns on Saturday, March 29, where participants will walk 1.86 miles starting and ending at the Walt Disney World Amphitheatre at Lake Eola.

Chris Hessler, the events manager for the Hope and Help Center of Central Florida, said one of his favorite parts of the entire day is the initial kickoff of the walk—diverse people from all over the Orlando community come together in support of the HIV/AIDS community.

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Elton John and Billy Jean King to host tennis benefit in Orlando

By : Staff Report
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Elton John and Billie Jean King are co-hosting a star-studded tennis event in Orlando on Nov. 17. Mylan WTT Smash Hits, presented by GEICO, is a charity night of tennis headlined by Venus Williams and Andy Roddick at the HP Field House of the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World Resort. It benefits the Elton John AIDS Foundation.

Last year’s event in Pittsburgh raised $1 million for the Foundation. This year’s event will also benefit Hope and Help Center of Central Florida, with a portion of the funds raised specifically targeted for local programs.

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AIDS Walk Orlando preview

By : Jamie Hyman
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A star-studded line-up and the first-ever after party are in store for what organizers are calling the biggest AIDS Walk Orlando yet. The annual event benefits the Hope and Help Center of Central Florida, Inc., a local organization dedicated to HIV/AIDS prevention and support.

According to Hope and Help events manager Chris Hessler, Congressman Alan Grayson will speak to kick off the walk and Orlando mayor Buddy Dyer will make the closing remarks. The men of Rock Hard Revue will perform on the main stage and Dwight Eubanks, from The  Real Housewives of Atlanta, will be walking and speaking as well.

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